Jonathan Guillen music + sound

an elephant never forgets

Elephant's Graveyard by George Brant is a play about the terrible and fascinating events that led to an actual Elephant hanging in early 20th century Tennessee. The play premiered in Austin, Texas in 2007 and has been gaining popularity at regional, community, and university theaters for its diverse cast, Americana overtones, and flexible staging.

In 2012, I was approached by Red Tape Theatre in Chicago to adapt the play into a larger work containing original music. The final adaptation contained 10 songs and was performed by Bluegrass band The New Switcheroo and cast. The music was nominated for a Joseph Jefferson Award in Outstanding Original Music and was my first trip to the spectacle that is the Jeff Awards. It was an amazing experience and I am grateful to have worked with such great musicians, character actors, rich voices, and creative designers.

...but the curtain did not close there. The show must go on!

Two new productions will be using my music in their upcoming versions: Henderson Civic Theatre in Henderson, Texas (Sep. 19-28) and Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah (Oct. 9-25). I am so thrilled the music for this show continues to live on, unlike Mary the elephant. If you're going to be in Henderson or Salt Lake City in the next few weeks, I suggest you check it out; these productions are going to be moving, heart-wrenching, and as much fun as you can have at an elephant lynching.

I want to extend my sincere gratitude to Henderson Civic Theatre and Westminster College. I hope more future productions continue to use my music and attract the curious and the morbid to this haunted circus freak show. Thanks to both productions and keep those trunks up; an elephant is an investment.